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Offensive Billboards?

JBlake
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8/18/2009 12:46:22 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
An atheist advertisement has been going up on billboards in several towns and cities: "Don't believe in god? You are not alone."

Many are taking great offense to this seemingly unoffensive phrase. I'd like to ask the Christians here why people are getting bent out of shape over these signs and demanding their removal. Why are these signs offensive?

Non-theists should feel free to respond as well, of course.

Here is a funny article that humorously puts the issue in perspective (also quoted below):
http://scienceblogs.com...

Against my advice, the Iowa Atheists and Freethinkers ran an incredibly offensive ad on city buses in De Moines featuring naked lesbians masturbating with Bibles.

No, wait, that wasn't it. It was an ad announcing that god hated Christians and they were all going to burn in hell.

No, I don't think that was it. It was an ad offering free bacon to anyone willing to deny the Holy Spirit, and the Iowa vegans were outraged.

Nah, don't think so. Actually, the horrible, awful, evil ad they were running was this one:

Don't believe in God? You are not alone. Iowa Atheists and Freethinkers. iowaatheists.org

That's it? "Don't believe in God? You aren't alone"? That's the ad that some people found offensive? So offensive that the ad was promptly yanked from city buses, and Governor Chet Culver announced that he was "disturbed, personally" by them?

That's insane. What's the matter with those Iowans? One day they do something to make us proud, the next they do something so petty and stupid.

Look, it's a clear case. There was absolutely nothing offensive about those ads, nothing that would make the horses skittish or frighten the children. Somewhere down the line, a few intolerant ignoramuses freaked out and started phoning the bus company, and a coward or a zealot somewhere in the chain of command saw an excuse to shut down a harmless advertisement. It's bigotry, plain and simple.
Cerebral_Narcissist
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8/18/2009 12:59:54 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
The people complaining are insecure in their faith, can't defend their convictions yet have based their lives on them. They see such adverts as a direct attack on them.

If you put a billboard stating that the earth was flat people would laugh, be bemused, or offer a cogent argument as to why you were wrong.

If you stick up a billboard denying God you get outrage.

I think that is very telling.

(Now I am not saying that this is true of every believer).
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wjmelements
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8/18/2009 1:02:35 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/18/2009 12:59:54 PM, Cerebral_Narcissist wrote:
(Now I am not saying that this is true of every believer).

And you're right in not saying that. Christians should cherish free speech, and those so outraged about this are being absurd.
in the blink of an eye you finally see the light
GeoLaureate8
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8/18/2009 1:08:02 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
I drive by an offensive billboard every morning on the free way. It says: "The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob." It makes me cringe every time I see it.

.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
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"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
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ournamestoolong
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8/18/2009 3:52:07 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
I am more disturbed by this billboard.

http://image26.webshots.com...

And this sign

http://farm4.static.flickr.com...

They personally interfere with my belief that Hell doesn't exist.

Free speech is free speech, whether you agree with it or not.
I'll get by with a little help from my friends.

Ournamestoolong

Secretary of Commerce

Destroy talking ads!
Chuckles
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8/18/2009 4:04:15 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
that's ridiculous. People choose the dumbest things to get pissy over. Christians (at least mormons) send out missionaries door to door preaching ridiculous things, but god forbid the atheists find an advertising space and get together! Who knows, they might even find a way to get people to think logically!
"Pumas are wretched beasts with enourmous salty genitals."-MadMonkey889

: At 5/5/2009 9:47:22 PM, rogerklotz wrote:
:That's obviously changed by the government. The Atlanteans probably had something to do with it.
: QUIT USING LOGIC

: At 4/25/2009 3:09:34 AM, DATCMOTO wrote:
:God is GOING to have His way with you.
: At 5/5/2009 11:41:18 AM, Volkov wrote:
:When both sides can agree and disagree without someone quoting Proverbs, then the debate comes worthwhile
giantrobot11
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8/19/2009 10:41:17 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Pretty much every religion has a toxic mix of self-pity and self-righteousness.
Each one thinks they are fighting for survival, yet 90% of the world is religious
JBlake
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8/19/2009 11:46:50 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/19/2009 10:41:17 AM, giantrobot11 wrote:
Pretty much every religion has a toxic mix of self-pity and self-righteousness.
Each one thinks they are fighting for survival, yet 90% of the world is religious

Actually, it is closer to 84%:

Christianity: 33%
Islam: 21%
Non-Theist: 16%
Hinduism: 14%
&ct.

http://www.nationmaster.com...
bearsfan
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8/19/2009 12:47:23 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/18/2009 3:52:07 PM, ournamestoolong wrote:
I am more disturbed by this billboard.

http://image26.webshots.com...

And this sign

http://farm4.static.flickr.com...

They personally interfere with my belief that Hell doesn't exist.

Free speech is free speech, whether you agree with it or not.

I don't have permission to view the first one. But the second one...
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InsertNameHere
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8/23/2009 6:52:02 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/18/2009 4:04:15 PM, Chuckles wrote:
that's ridiculous. People choose the dumbest things to get pissy over. Christians (at least mormons) send out missionaries door to door preaching ridiculous things, but god forbid the atheists find an advertising space and get together! Who knows, they might even find a way to get people to think logically! :

Gotta love the classic hypocrisy of religion. Apperently religious people can preach, but then they get all pissy when Atheists "preach" their views. It goes both ways, people. If Atheists can't preach then nobody should be able to preach. Plain and simple.

P.S- keep religion out of the charities and state affairs, please!
regebro
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8/23/2009 11:23:16 PM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/18/2009 12:46:22 PM, JBlake wrote:
Why are these signs offensive?

Easy. They challenge the dogmatic position that is holding these peoples life together. This is people who at some level strongly doubt their belief, but has taken the decision to not question it, because it would bring them too much pain.

Either religion has hurt them in some way, or they just feel that they are forced to believe for some sort of social reason. For example, they may have been born into a strongly religious family, and they may believe (wrongly or rightly) that if they would stop to believe, they would be left out of the family community.

Naturally, the risk of being excluded from your own family, or from a group of friends, will fill you with dread. But also, these people have some sort of nagging feeling that the whole religion thing is BS. If you are a person who are conscious and articulate about the reason for these feelings, you probably end up going through the movements of religion without actually believing, but not everybody is conscious and articulate and can analyze their own feelings like that. I suspect that way less than half of the population can. The rest will just be filled with conflicting difficult feelings on the thought of atheism. Probably both the feeling that atheism would release them from their doubts, but also the fear of losing your place in your family and in society.

How do you handle these conflicting feelings? Easy: By dogmatism. You handle them by repeatedly confirming to yourself that God is Great and Atheism is evil. This is why people like DATSOMETHINGMO and GodSands hang here. It gives them a reason to confirm to *themselves* that their religion is right. What we other say is probably completely irrelevant, it's the fact that they get a reason to repeat their own standpoints and their own arguments to themselves, without it sounding like doubt. Because if you repeat the arguments to yourself in your head, then it's obvious you are trying to convince yourself. But when you do it in a message board you sound like you are trying to convince others.

These billboards are offensive, because they directly challenge the dogmatic position that the people have taken in order to stop these conflicting feeling. They are afraid of what atheism would do to their life, and therefore they have taken a dogmatic position to handle that fear, and these billboards directly challenge that.

These people think, rightly or wrongly, that if they accept the message of the billboards, their life will fall apart. That makes them very, very angry. Of course, they can't admit that this is the reason, because that would be like admitting that their dogma is wrong. So instead they come up with other reasons, like it being evil or bad for society and FOR GOD SAKE THINK OF THE CHILDREN and similar inanities.

Of course, the reaction in the US is special, because religion permeates the society so much, and there is so much religious dogmatism. In Sweden, the Humanists (which is an Atheist group there) ran an ad campaign that said "God probably doesn't exist". Yeah, people got upset. But not many, and I didn't hear of any vandalism.
So prove me wrong, then.
InsertNameHere
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8/24/2009 12:26:28 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/23/2009 7:43:41 PM, Nags wrote:
I personally find this billboard offensive:
http://www.kisumuhomestays.com... :

lol, an Obama billboard. Still less offensive than a McCain one though.
Rezzealaux
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8/24/2009 12:36:39 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
Not exactly on topic, but uhh,

[...]Governor Chet Culver announced that he was "disturbed, personally" by them? [...]

is it possible to be disturbed impersonally by something?
: If you weren't new here, you'd know not to feed me such attention. This is like an orgasm in my brain right now. *hehe, my name is in a title, hehe* (http://www.debate.org...)

Just in case I get into some BS with FREEDO again about how he's NOT a narcissist.

"The law is there to destroy evil under the constitutional government."
So... what's there to destroy evil inside of and above the constitutional government?
TheSkeptic
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8/24/2009 12:50:14 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
is it possible to be disturbed impersonally by something?

Hehe, people also love to say "I personally believe X". As if you could impersonally believe something...
TheSkeptic
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8/24/2009 12:55:13 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
And on topic:

I'm not sure there really is anything to say here. It's plain that Iowa is just filled with a lot of intolerant buttholes.

However, I do hope the Iowa atheists, or any atheists as a matter of fact, aren't discouraged by this. That's because I've noticed an unhealthy trend among the atheist community in general: we suck at getting our voice out there. For the intellectual community we shine like gold with our opinions (just look at this website), but in mainstream culture it's the opposite. Jews have much more political influence and power but we outnumber them in population. Heck, with many of my friends, the word "atheism" sounds either partly foreign or tabboo.

And people like Governor Chet Culver are just there to impede.
brian_eggleston
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8/24/2009 5:34:09 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/18/2009 3:52:07 PM, ournamestoolong wrote:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com...
Free speech is free speech, whether you agree with it or not.

So Democrats and Liberals are going to Hell?

What, if you are someone who cares about the welfare of those people in society who are less fortunate than yourself, you are despicably evil and will be punished for all eternity?

Well, if that's so, the Good Samaritan will be burnt to a crisp by now.
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I-am-a-panda
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8/24/2009 6:57:14 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/24/2009 5:34:09 AM, brian_eggleston wrote:
At 8/18/2009 3:52:07 PM, ournamestoolong wrote:
http://farm4.static.flickr.com...
Free speech is free speech, whether you agree with it or not.

So Democrats and Liberals are going to Hell?

What, if you are someone who cares about the welfare of those people in society who are less fortunate than yourself, you are despicably evil and will be punished for all eternity?

Well, if that's so, the Good Samaritan will be burnt to a crisp by now.

Apparently Jesus was extremely Pro-capitalism, even after turning over the tables at the markets.
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Kleptin
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8/31/2009 10:20:29 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/24/2009 12:50:14 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
is it possible to be disturbed impersonally by something?

Hehe, people also love to say "I personally believe X". As if you could impersonally believe something...

They include that in order to acknowledge the existence of other beliefs. Its a tricky little word :P
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DATCMOTO
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8/31/2009 10:25:53 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 10:20:29 AM, Kleptin wrote:
At 8/24/2009 12:50:14 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
is it possible to be disturbed impersonally by something?

Hehe, people also love to say "I personally believe X". As if you could impersonally believe something...

They include that in order to acknowledge the existence of other beliefs. Its a tricky little word :P

'impersonally believe something' is covered by OBJECTIVE belief: We believe in an objective Truth, namely GOD.
We believe in objective truthS.. namely the Bible.
So I personally believe in 'impersonal beliefs'.. yes.
The Cross.. the Cross.
Chuckles
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8/31/2009 10:55:50 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/24/2009 12:55:13 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
And on topic:

I'm not sure there really is anything to say here. It's plain that Iowa is just filled with a lot of intolerant buttholes.

However, I do hope the Iowa atheists, or any atheists as a matter of fact, aren't discouraged by this. That's because I've noticed an unhealthy trend among the atheist community in general: we suck at getting our voice out there. For the intellectual community we shine like gold with our opinions (just look at this website), but in mainstream culture it's the opposite. Jews have much more political influence and power but we outnumber them in population. Heck, with many of my friends, the word "atheism" sounds either partly foreign or tabboo.

And people like Governor Chet Culver are just there to impede.

they mention this in Religulous, atheists make up a bigger percentage of americans than jews, gays, blacks, and a few other groups, but have much less influence than gays, or blacks, or jews. Atheists just for whatever reason don't have groups like the NAACP or ACLU or what have you. It's kind of interesting to me.
I think bill maher called atheists or agnostics an "untapped minority"
"Pumas are wretched beasts with enourmous salty genitals."-MadMonkey889

: At 5/5/2009 9:47:22 PM, rogerklotz wrote:
:That's obviously changed by the government. The Atlanteans probably had something to do with it.
: QUIT USING LOGIC

: At 4/25/2009 3:09:34 AM, DATCMOTO wrote:
:God is GOING to have His way with you.
: At 5/5/2009 11:41:18 AM, Volkov wrote:
:When both sides can agree and disagree without someone quoting Proverbs, then the debate comes worthwhile
DATCMOTO
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8/31/2009 11:21:05 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 10:55:50 AM, Chuckles wrote:
At 8/24/2009 12:55:13 AM, TheSkeptic wrote:
And on topic:

I'm not sure there really is anything to say here. It's plain that Iowa is just filled with a lot of intolerant buttholes.

However, I do hope the Iowa atheists, or any atheists as a matter of fact, aren't discouraged by this. That's because I've noticed an unhealthy trend among the atheist community in general: we suck at getting our voice out there. For the intellectual community we shine like gold with our opinions (just look at this website), but in mainstream culture it's the opposite. Jews have much more political influence and power but we outnumber them in population. Heck, with many of my friends, the word "atheism" sounds either partly foreign or tabboo.

And people like Governor Chet Culver are just there to impede.

they mention this in Religulous, atheists make up a bigger percentage of americans than jews, gays, blacks, and a few other groups, but have much less influence than gays, or blacks, or jews. Atheists just for whatever reason don't have groups like the NAACP or ACLU or what have you. It's kind of interesting to me.
I think bill maher called atheists or agnostics an "untapped minority"

Trying to lump atheism (or homosexuality) in with being Jewish, or blacks or any other race is utterly dishonest: people are BORN black or Jewish.. people CHOOSE atheism or homosexuality.
The Cross.. the Cross.
I-am-a-panda
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8/31/2009 11:34:21 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 11:21:05 AM, DATCMOTO wrote:

Trying to lump atheism (or homosexuality) in with being Jewish, or blacks or any other race is utterly dishonest: people are BORN black or Jewish.. people CHOOSE atheism or homosexuality.

If Judaism isn't a choice, then neither is atheism.

In any case, Judaism is a choice. There are people who renounce Judaism, as ell as those who convert to Judaism.
Pizza. I have enormous respect for Pizza.
JBlake
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8/31/2009 11:39:13 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
As usual, DATCMOTO is missing the core of the point.

If Atheists were to band together (for organizations) then they would have a powerful voice in policy decisions, fighting persecution, &ct. Blacks, judaism, and other minority groups have advocacy organizations, Atheists do not. Mahr is saying that if Atheists organized an advocacy group they can increase their voice.
Rezzealaux
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8/31/2009 11:44:02 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
In America, the godless outnumber the Jews.
: If you weren't new here, you'd know not to feed me such attention. This is like an orgasm in my brain right now. *hehe, my name is in a title, hehe* (http://www.debate.org...)

Just in case I get into some BS with FREEDO again about how he's NOT a narcissist.

"The law is there to destroy evil under the constitutional government."
So... what's there to destroy evil inside of and above the constitutional government?
JBlake
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8/31/2009 11:46:56 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 11:44:02 AM, Rezzealaux wrote:
In America, the godless outnumber the Jews.

I know non-theists make up about 16% of the world's population. Do you happen to know the percentage in the U.S., Rezz?
Rezzealaux
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8/31/2009 11:49:34 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 11:46:56 AM, JBlake wrote:
At 8/31/2009 11:44:02 AM, Rezzealaux wrote:
In America, the godless outnumber the Jews.

I know non-theists make up about 16% of the world's population. Do you happen to know the percentage in the U.S., Rezz?

Thought it was somewhere from 18 to 24, but I can't remember. It's probably on Wiki. I do know that they outnumber the Jews now though. In the USA, at least.
: If you weren't new here, you'd know not to feed me such attention. This is like an orgasm in my brain right now. *hehe, my name is in a title, hehe* (http://www.debate.org...)

Just in case I get into some BS with FREEDO again about how he's NOT a narcissist.

"The law is there to destroy evil under the constitutional government."
So... what's there to destroy evil inside of and above the constitutional government?
I-am-a-panda
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8/31/2009 11:53:49 AM
Posted: 7 years ago
At 8/31/2009 11:49:34 AM, Rezzealaux wrote:
At 8/31/2009 11:46:56 AM, JBlake wrote:
At 8/31/2009 11:44:02 AM, Rezzealaux wrote:
In America, the godless outnumber the Jews.

I know non-theists make up about 16% of the world's population. Do you happen to know the percentage in the U.S., Rezz?

Thought it was somewhere from 18 to 24, but I can't remember. It's probably on Wiki. I do know that they outnumber the Jews now though. In the USA, at least.

Guides for massive reparations and PC immunity:

1) Find an Atheist holocaust (i.e. Before the scientific revolution)
2 Prove how Atheists are viewed as a lesser class
3) ????
4) Profit :D!
Pizza. I have enormous respect for Pizza.